Maurice and Therese: The Story of a Love

Maurice and Therese: The Story of a Love

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by Patrick Ahern
     
 

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As Saint Therese lay dying in the Carmel of Lisieux, she overheard a conversation that amused her. Outside her window, two nuns were discussing what they could write in her obituary that could possibly be of any interest, since the twenty-four-year-old nun had never done anything worth noting. Therese was pleased, for she had always kept a low profile. With the…  See more details below

Overview

As Saint Therese lay dying in the Carmel of Lisieux, she overheard a conversation that amused her. Outside her window, two nuns were discussing what they could write in her obituary that could possibly be of any interest, since the twenty-four-year-old nun had never done anything worth noting. Therese was pleased, for she had always kept a low profile. With the posthumous publication of her spiritual autobiography in 1898, however, that low profile would vanish instantly. She became one of the most beloved saints of all time, and her influence will expand dramatically because of Pope John Paul II's declaration that she is a Doctor of the Church. Amid growing interest in her writings comes the collected correspondence between her and a humble young seminarian, Maurice Belliere. Though they never met in person, they exchanged twenty-one letters that opened a window on the heart of Saint Therese that would have remained forever closed had Maurice not written to the Mother Superior at the convent asking for a nun to pray for him. The Mother Superior chose Therese, and in these conversational letters the Little Flower reveals herself in a way that we would never have known from her autobiography. In his accompanying text, Bishop Patrick Ahern expertly leads the reader into the worlds of Maurice and Therese and reveals the full beauty of this saint's spirituality.

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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
Ahern, the auxiliary bishop of New York, explores the relationship between the Carmelite nun St. Therese of Lisieux and a struggling young priest, Maurice Belliere, by compiling the 21 letters exchanged between them and providing biographical details. St. Therese had a short life, dying at the age of 24 of tuberculosis, but she expressed in her prose meaning and inspiration that brought peace to troubled souls. Through this correspondence, the reader is able to "listen in" on the intimate conversation she shared with Maurice as she encouraged his self-acceptance. The two became soulmates through their letters from 1896 until St. Therese's death in 1897. Expressing the suffering and passion of two imperfect persons touched by God, their story captures what St. Therese did best: showing by example how to be holy in life. Recommended for large religious collections.--Leo Vincent Kriz, West Des Moines Lib., IA
From the Publisher
"In his balanced, insightful narrative, Bishop Ahern avoids the pitfalls of hagiography: He gives us no plaster saint, but a full-bodied portrait, full of shadows and light. The reader is left with a sense of the sheer divine mystery of the love and suffering-in every sense the passion?of these two young people touched by God. It is a most timely book for a secular age; it is also a gift."
—Charles Scribner III

"A beautiful and inspiring story; truly a book about a saint for sinners."
—Mary Higgins Clark

"A marvelous book. Perhaps I knew Therese as a saint before I read her letters to Maurice and his to her; I did not know her as a woman. Now she fascinates me more than ever."
—John Cardinal O'Connor

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780307568885
Publisher:
The Crown Publishing Group
Publication date:
07/01/2009
Sold by:
Random House
Format:
NOOK Book
Sales rank:
720,456
File size:
3 MB

Meet the Author

Patrick Ahern, an auxiliary bishop of New York, is widely regarded as one of the foremost experts on the spirituality of Saint Therese of Lisieux. He lives and works in Manhattan.


From the Trade Paperback edition.

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